English

In the English Faculty, we aim to inspire all students to be successful; to flourish in a safe and secure learning environment; become confident and creative users of the English Language and enthusiastic appreciators of English Literature.

The English Faculty builds on the skills students have learnt at KS2 by meeting their changing literacy needs through a curriculum that is diverse, relevant and challenging, using ICT, and linking with other subject areas to support their studies across the school.

Students should leave KS3 and progress to KS4 as competent users of a range of different writing styles, and with a broad knowledge of various authors and genres of writing. These skills will provide a strong base to promote success at GCSE.

Key Stage Three

At Key Stage Three, the English Faculty strive to foster a keen enthusiasm for Language and Literature through the provision of a culturally enriching, highly stimulating curriculum that prompts our students to form a personal and original response to both the diverse literary heritage and modern texts that they are exposed to during their time with us. We endeavour to nurture insightful students, who are able to speak, read and write fluently, confidently and accurately, adapting their language and style to suit a range of contexts, purposes and audiences when appropriate. Through reading in particular, students develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually and socially, and so the cultivation of a love of literature and sincere appreciation of the writer’s craft and authorial intention is a priority for the Faculty. We envisage that the delivery of a rich and challenging curriculum will encourage our students to maturely interact with diverse text types, question the concepts presented to them and communicate their observations effectively.

The curriculum comprises reading material ranging from extracts to whole fiction and non-fiction texts; these are selected to inspire and engage through a variety of genres and text types to provoke thoughtful and discerning responses from students. Wider, independent reading is facilitated through weekly library lessons and supported by the Accelerated Reader Programme. Literature from other cultures and eras are covered to illuminate the world we live in and broaden students’ grasp of the extensive literary canon. To consolidate this, our annual visit to the Globe Theatre provides Year Sevens with the opportunity to experience Shakespeare’s work live within an inspirational, authentic setting as originally intended. Skills in writing are taught to enable students to purposefully structure and craft their language and speaking and listening skills are developed through regular discussion, debate, presentations and the reading of drama texts.

• Poetry - pre and post 1914 and poetry from other cultures

• Fiction

• Drama

• Creative writing

• Shakespeare

• Media - printed and moving image

Key stage Four - English Language

By the time students reach Year 10 and 11, it is expected that they have the skills to read, write, speak and listen effectively. Students have been taught these skills throughout the last three key stages and students now work to master these skills before completing their English Language GCSE.

The Faculty follows the AQA exam board curriculum (8700) and students will sit two exams at the end of this course in Year 11 and their GCSE is graded on the outcome of these papers. Paper 1 ‘Explorations into Creative Reading and Writing’ (fiction paper) and Paper 2 ‘Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives’ (non-fiction paper). Both papers are 1 hour and 45 minutes long and are worth 80 marks each. These marks are divided equally between reading and writing skills. In the reading sections students are expected to be able to select relevant information from the previously unseen texts; write about the effects of language and structure; evaluate a text using your opinions and compare the methods used by authors (paper 2 only). In the writing section students are expected to be able to select the correct style and form to write in; engage the reader through different writing techniques; structure your writing effectively from sentence to whole text level and use an extensive range of vocabulary and punctuation.

Summer Term of Year 10 students will complete a Spoken Language Endorsement assessment where they will be awarded a Pass, Merit or Distinction (which will feature on your English Language GCSE certificate). Here students arel be tested on their ability to structure their speech effectively; use a wide vocabulary and how they listen and respond appropriately.

Other ways to support learning outside school:

  • Read a variety of fiction and non-fiction texts frequently - this is vital to engage with the style, form, structure and vocabulary used in these texts. Read articles with parents/carers/friends and discuss/debate the points within it.
  • Use the ‘Bedrock’ vocabulary development program.
  • Practise writing creatively - create a list of specific vocabulary and generic imagery.
  • Write letters to friends, family, organisations, newspapers.
  • Use your revision guides and resources on the Google Classroom to practise exam style questions and time yourself carefully.
  • Use Youtube and Pixl videos to learn different approaches to answering the exam questions.

Key Stage Four - English Literature

The Faculty follows the AQA exam board curriculum (8702) and students will sit two exams at the end of this course; the GCSE is graded on the outcome of these papers. Paper 1: ‘Macbeth and A Christmas Carol’ and Paper 2: ‘An Inspector Calls, Conflict Poetry and Unseen Poetry’. Paper 1 is 1 hour and 45 minutes and is worth 64 marks. Paper 2 is 2 hours and 15 minutes and is worth 96 marks. All texts are assessed for the students’ ability to select evidence; identify techniques and methods used by the author and analyse the effects of these on the reader. All texts are also assessed for students’ knowledge of the contexts surrounding them, apart from the Unseen Poetry section. Responses to ‘An Inspector Calls’ and ‘Macbeth’ are awarded 4 marks on each for Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPAG), so it is extremely important to read through these essays carefully.

Other ways to support learning outside school:

  • Read and revise all the texts you’ve studied frequently - this is vital to ensure you maintain your knowledge of the narratives, characters, themes, key quotations and contexts.
  • Prepare revision cards and materials to help you remember key information about the texts. Ask friends and family to test you on your knowledge of key quotations.
  • Practise writing about different characters and themes in the texts.
  • Research the contexts for different texts in detail and try to make links between this and your understanding of the narratives, characters and themes.
  • Attend performances or events featuring the key texts or their contexts.
  • Watch a variety of adaptations of the texts on film. (Although keep in mind that these may differ from the original text.
  • Use your revision guides and resources on the Google Classroom to practise exam style questions and time yourself carefully.
  • Use Youtube and Pixl videos to learn different approaches to answering the exam questions and to revise set texts.
  • Use the Pixl Lit app to check your memory recall.

Key Stage Four - Film Studies

Film studies is taught as a GCSE option subject for students in Years 9 to 11. The underlying focus of the subject is to foster a deep appreciation of film which involves learning and understanding key cinematic techniques. Studying the history of cinema and movie making, also provides a backdrop for the successes of modern, contemporary film.

A major part of the course requires students to analyse film and apply their knowledge, showing an understanding of filmmakers’ choices and the effects these have on an audience. There is also a requirement to consider the cultural impact of film on society.

We follow the Eduqas GCSE syllabus, which is assessed through two examination papers and a coursework element. The main components cover the following areas:

  • US Film Comparative Study
  • Key Developments in Film and Film Technology
  • US Independent Film
  • Global English Language Film
  • Global Non-English Language Film
  • Contemporary British Film
  • Screenplay Writing
  • Screenplay Evaluation

Some of the films studied include: King Solomon’s Mines, Slumdog Millionaire, Tsotsi, Little Miss Sunshine, Juno, Attack The Block and Rear Window.

Meet the Department

Head of English Language

Mrs A. Elder (maternity leave)

Head of English Literature

Mrs L. Campbell

Lead Practitioner and MAT Advisor for English

Mrs L. McGee

Key Stage Three Co-ordinator and Jack Petchey Co-ordinator

Miss E. O'Mahoney

Library and Literacy Co-ordinator and Teacher of English

Miss K. Neville

Subject Specialist for Film Studies and Teacher of English

Mrs K. Moore

Subject Specialist for Sociology and Teacher of English

Miss L Yeomans

Teachers of English

Miss M. Barrie

Mrs E. Noller

Miss D. Lovett

Miss G. Mizen